Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Quotes of the day

From Thomas Frank's Pity the Billionaire (New York: Metropolitan Books, 2012):
One reason the bogeyman of the Invasive Regulator can still mobilize the troops, I think, is that small businesses actually experience the regulatory presence, such as it is, far more acutely than do their big-business colleagues. When we talk about the age of deregulation or the era of "neoliberalism," we are referring to the gradual rollback of certain banking rules, the rise of a certain school of economic thought, and the privatizing of certain government functions. These are important developments in the grand, historical sense, but to a struggling small-business owner they might seem completely irrelevant. It's hard to convince a man sweating over a fifty-page income-tax return that the state has gone away or that markets are now in charge. (p. 101)
Small business is the face of the Right today because its pugnacious, anti-big-business message catches the bitter national mood; what the Right actually does is deliver the same favors to the same people as always.

Which is to say that behind the mask stands the hated megacorporation itself, making all its usual demands for lower taxes, sedated regulators, and free-trade deals with countries where labor unions are unknown. (p. 107) 

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